Some of the things

Some of the things that we anticipate for years finally come with little rattles and feigned tears, with tired attention and annoyance. It is also sad when events that are so romanced into our personal life goals are so mediated and second hand, or that some sort of completion is sought in an event wrought by the hands and eyes of a stranger. Although these moments of artistic empathy are some of the deepest reaching, not so when their effect is to be so premeditated in the fantasies of the receptor.

All this is to say, that after some 20 years of waiting to see ‘2001: A Space Odyssey’ on a large screen, it has passed and the effect was like that of a man coming to terms with an estranged lover. There was a nodding familiarity coupled with a halcyon mistiness, but no profound sense of accomplishment. After all, sitting through a film for the 25th time really isnt so much of a feat.

Yet after all this, certain elements must be catalogued and not forgotten for the pleasure they brought in their fabulous cinematic immensity: the alignment of earth moon sun under RStrauss’ tones, recognizing the pilot of the shuttle as the navigator of the bomber from ‘Dr. Strangelove’, the shriek of the radio signal from the monolith over the loud speakers, and the first half of the ‘stargate’ sequence.

It is hard to help wondering how much more powerful the key moments of the film would be if seen before the passage of time had rendered ‘Thus Spake Zarathustra’ trite and almost embarrassing. It is hard to help wondering how much more powerful the perceived epiphanaic events in our lives might be if they had not weighed so heavy in our anticipated personal development. It is hard to help wondering whether the next time I sit in on Beethoven’s glorious Ninth I will be rattled or embarrassed.



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